Can Expenses Associated with Cloud Storage be Checked?

By CIOReview | Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Cloud Storage is undoubtedly the most viable approach at housing all the in-house as well as remote data within enterprises. In the absence of an appropriate structure or management, cloud storage can turn into an expensive ordeal. This staggers the growth of any business down the road, and it’s important for companies to incorporate a cost-efficient cloud storage policy. Small and medium businesses (SMBs) often find it difficult to incorporate a cloud infrastructure because of the relevant expenses, which is out of their budget. Such systems require efficient management policies and skilled people to do the job, adding more associated costs in the process. Service and maintenance expenses are only few in the list of this ever-increasing table of expenditures. Moreover, it’s unjustified to integrate a cloud storage policy, which results in an expensive affair. Enterprises must incorporate strategies which reduce the amount of capital spent on cloud storage options. Cloud storage expenses can be minimized to a significant extent by adopting few essential steps.

Streamlining Access Control

Defining boundaries for access control is one of the most crucial approaches at saving money in a cloud storage infrastructure. To efficiently manage data and ensure its security, users are usually categorized into groups with similar functionalities or access needs. The approach helps administrators to identify users based on the permissions they require for using the data stored in cloud. Moreover, by defining access control administrators find it easier to update permissions for groups, and addition of any new data can be easily accessed by the relevant users concerned with that particular set of data. This approach, as noticeable, helps to prevent unwanted and unauthorized user from accessing any important data, which could lead to potential security issue.

Utilizing Cloud Storage as a Backup Option

Amount of data that is being stored and the quantity of I/O generated are the usual factors governing the pricing policy of a cloud-based storage. The chances of performing restoring operation from the cloud dwindle significantly when cloud storage is incorporated only as a secondary option. This, in turn helps to restrict the amount of cloud I/O, thus cutting down significantly on costs. This is the prime reason why enterprises see cloud storage services only as an alternative option.

Prevention of Vendor Lock-in and the Need for Data Classification

Storage vendors usually push users to use the services furnished by them. These cloud-based storage services tend to be much more expensive than the one presented by generalized cloud service providers. In such a scenario, it is an ideal strategy to prevent vendor lock-in, unless deemed absolutely necessary.

Based on significance and functionalities, data is known to exist in several categories, each carrying their own specific business value. It is advisable for companies to classify that data, based on relevant categories. This approach assist enterprises to create policies which meet the demands of each data type, without burning major hole in the entrepreneur’s pocket, seen as a result of integrating expensive cloud features.

Preventing Cloud-based Restorations

Apart from the problem surrounding mitigation of unnecessary cloud storage I/O costs, cloud-based restorations usually tend to be slower as well, compared to restorations executed on local sources. This is comprehended from the fact every time a user is restoring the data, someone else is waiting on it, and subsequently this unavailability of data translates into direct and unneeded expenses. Intercepting such superfluous costs is essentially the reason behind avoiding cloud-based restorations.

Removing Data Duplicates and Expulsion of Unwanted Data

Often the data stored onto cloud comprises of duplicates of each other, which end up consuming unnecessary storage space. In such a scenario, it’s beneficial for enterprises to deduplicate the data before transferring it onto the cloud. Apart from cutting down on expenses, deduplication help companies to reduce the amount of data stored onto cloud, and makes room for backups to be executed in a more timely basis.

Charges for storing data onto cloud apply per gigabyte, and consequently storage prices increases as more data is accumulated. Enterprises need to purge the useless sets of data on a regular basis to avoid expenses associated with their storage.

Weighing Prices for Different Storage Systems and Identifying the Most Appropriate Features

Different enterprises demand distinct features depending on the organization’s needs. It is imperative that the expenses increase with growing number of features. So, it’s advisable for companies to decide on the features they want to integrate, instead of aimlessly choosing providers who furnish more features.

Version Control must house essential documents and data sets required for maintaining data, apart from maintaining the history of changes made to data sets over its lifecycle. Enterprises should draft their policies in such a way as to accommodate a comprehensive guidance regarding the utilization of specific features.

Deciding the Timeframe for Data Retention

A majority of data enterprises deal with usually remains useful only for a short period. However, some data sets are maintained within the storage for solely compliance needs. The data which runs out its course of being utilized after a while only adds up taking more storage space, and suffers more unneeded expenses in the process. This is particularly why companies must focus on forming a policy which takes data retention into consideration.

On a broader perspective, the utilization of cloud technology should reduce the organization’s expenses, not increase it. A true realization to cloud integration only makes sense when enterprises are able to save more money, besides adding value to the process. SMBs should find cloud storage easily accessible, rather than getting entangled within the cost complexities. Gradually adopting these practices will enable companies to realize the benefits of incorporating a comprehensive cloud storage policy, one which can be sought within the proce considerations of an enterprise.